Pomegranate - useful properties, varieties, choices and dishes from pomegranate
All about garnet
Where pomegranate grows
Pomegranate is a shrub or tree up to six meters high. The flowers are large pitcher-shaped, purple or red-orange. It blooms, depending on the variety, from May to August. Fruits - large berries, spherical shape, with a diameter of from eight to eighteen centimeters, and the color of the peel can vary from light yellow to dark red. Pomegranate contains a large number of small seeds, surrounded by juicy bright red flesh. A ripe fruit can have more than a thousand seeds; therefore, in ancient times, these berries were considered a symbol of fertility.
Today, pomegranate is successfully and widely cultivated in many countries, such as Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, as well as in the Middle East and Europe: in Portugal, France, Spain, Italy, Slovenia, etc. In the post-Soviet space, it is grown in Sochi, Crimea and southern republic.Wild pomegranate can be found in Central Asia and Transcaucasia, where it grows on salt marshes, stony slopes, in the underbrush.
Pomegranate is one of the first crops that people began to use. The ancient Egyptians, with these fruits, buried the dead, as they symbolized the hope of return. The pomegranate became the national symbol of Spain and gave the name to the city of Granada, so named after the alley of pomegranates that the Moors planted. In the Middle East, the homeland of the pomegranate, he was called the “king of all fruits” and legends were made about his benefits. It is believed that the tip of the grenade became the prototype of the royal crown.
Depending on the variety, pomegranates vary significantly in shape, size, color, and taste. Use the fruit, separating them by the content of sugar and acid. Sweet is often used fresh, sour-sweet is used for the manufacture of juices, sauces and is widely used in cooking, sour go for technical processing (grenadine, juices, etc.).
Among the varieties that are most often found on our counter prevail: Uzbek Achik-anor, Kizil-anor,Gulesha red and pink - with large fruits and sweet-sour taste; medium Asian Akdona - crimson shade with large grains and Crimean Ak Dona Crimean - with a sweet taste and creamy skin with a blush on its side or red spots all over the surface.
Where pomegranate grows
Useful properties of pomegranate
Garnet is very useful, because it combines a harmless acid with useful sugars, vitamins and minerals. From fruit, up to sixty percent of juice with a high content of anthocyanins, up to 20% of sugars (glucose and fructose), 10% of apple, lemon, oxalic and other organic acids, phytoncides, nitrogenous substances, tannin, chloride and sulphate salts.
Natural juice contains more antioxidants than any other and is an excellent therapeutic and prophylactic agent. It increases the level of hemoglobin, helps to reduce pressure, improves blood formation and the cardiovascular system. It is also useful in diabetes, as it reduces the level of sugar, and antioxidants are needed for people working in areas with increased radiation. He also increases appetite, thanks to tannins, cures diarrhea and has proven itself as an anti-inflammatory.
Decoctions and tinctures from the rind of fruit have antihelminthic effect, relieve inflammation, are used in the treatment of the oral cavity and throat diseases, and the powdered peel effectively removes acne and treats burns.
Dried membranes, when added to tea, improve night sleep and soothing effect on the nervous system, and recent studies have shown that 250 ml of juice per day can protect against the appearance of prostate cancer, help with impotence, inhibit the destruction of cartilage tissues in arthritis.
How to choose a grenade
A ripe pomegranate cannot have a smell, and it must have a shiny peel. Regardless of its color, the color should be uniform. If it is smooth, the fetus is picked up prematurely. It is important to determine when and where the peel has become completely dry, on wood or during storage. It should be remembered that during long-term storage not only the skin of the fruit dries out, but also the seeds.
It is also necessary that the fruit peel should be irregularly fractured, curved, hard, dry and dense, up to 2 mm thick. The pomegranate should not be damaged and have a brown or green tail.If the fruit is soft it means that it was stabbed during transportation, or it was frozen or rotted.
How to clean the pomegranate
The first way. The tip of the knife must be cut out the place of flowering. Next should be cut from top to bottom of the peel of the fruit on the "ribs". They are noticeable, although not very strong. Take a grenade and break it into slices.
The second way. Cut the fruit in half. Holding halves above the container, you should tap lightly on the crust of the pomegranate. The pips themselves fall out on a plate.
Recipes with pomegranate
Pomegranates are not only eaten fresh, such as papaya, but they also make juice, syrups, jams, drinks, ice cream, wines, seasonings and much more. By steaming the juice from sour varieties, narsharab sauce is prepared - the best seasoning for many Caucasian dishes. Also from the fruits make very tasty salads and pies.
To prepare this wonderful dish you will need:
- 2 medium sized grenades;
- 20 grams of sugar;
- 4 eggs;
- 200 grams of flour;
- 100 grams of butter;
- 100 ml of thick cream;
- Lemon juice;
- Powdered sugar.
First of all, you need to squeeze the juice from the pomegranates, after getting some grains from them, for decoration.Mix juice, 150 grams of sugar and 3 eggs. Stir and let it brew (about half an hour).
At this time, prepare the dough. To do this, mix and chop 200 grams of flour, 100 grams of butter and 50 grams of sugar, and then add an egg and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. Knead the dough.
When the dough is ready, roll it out and place it in a mold (the best option is 22 cm in diameter) and put it in the freezer for 15 minutes. After that, the cake should be baked (pressed down with a load) in the oven for 20 minutes at a temperature of 20 ° C 7 minutes without load.
While there is time, strain the mixture and, while stirring, add cream to it. Pour the filling over the cake and bake for another 35 minutes at 150 ° C.
Before serving, cool, sprinkle with powdered sugar and decorate with pomegranate seeds.